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by Darren Pauli, Computerworld Australia

CIOs: If Only Reducing Costs Was As Easy As Security

May 07, 20082 mins
Application SecurityCybercrimeNetwork Security

Information security was rated last place in the Top 10 challenges for CIOs in a recent IDC survey.

Conquering IT security is a breeze for CIOs, according to an IDC report.

The IDC Annual Forecast for Management report surveyed 363 IT executives from Australia (254 respondents) and New Zealand (109 respondents) across industries including finance, distribution, leisure and the public sector.

Information security was rated last place in the Top 10 challenges for CIOs.

Threats targeting the application layer were cited as the biggest concern (36 percent), while spyware (16 percent) was rated as a bigger threat than disgruntled employees, remote access, and mobile devices.

The CIOs top priority for the next 12 months was reducing costs and addressing a lack of resources. This was followed by meeting user expectations and developing effective business cases.

The top four IT investments for the next year will be in collaborative technologies and knowledge management; systems infrastructure; back office applications; and business intelligence.

Maintenance fees were unsurprisingly identified as the biggest IT expense by almost 35 percent of respondents. The figures in the report suggest a slight increase in expenditure since last year.

Hardware was the second biggest cost chewing up 23 percent of budgets, followed by software and then network costs. Outsourcing was rated the fifth biggest expense with costs set to continue to rise incrementally from 2007 to 2009.

IT expenditure has doubled in five years, according to IDC. Business splurges about 6.2 percent of operating expenses on technology, up from 3 percent in 2003, a figure which remained flat since 1996, with the exception of a .8 percent rise during the dotcom boom.

CIOs will allocate budgets to document management, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, and workflow management systems.

The top five hottest skills, according to respondents, are networking, IT service management, help desk, and enterprise applications.

More staff are leaving the enterprise than smaller businesses, according to figures which show an average employee turnover of 8 percent.